Saturday, August 13, 2011

Hear ye, Hear ye!

One of those very peaceful very early Saturday mornings in late summer.  The air is not clear because there appears to be a gentle haze of smoke from some distant fire hanging across the river.  The gentle birdsong of these woods has been abducted by the brass band call of a murder of crows in the ravine.  They had landed mid-tree line, and with the determination of a political candidate, continued their wining and screaming and protesting across the woods, each one determined to caw louder than their brethren.

In a few minutes just across the top of the trees a shadow was silhouetted against the gray sky.  A brown hawk flew in and quietly landed in a nearby tree.  The crows ignored or missed seeing the new visitor.  Then a few minutes later another brown hawk entered the foray, but with much whistling and sharp singing making his/her presence known.  The second hawk landed in the highest tree and cried and cried and cried.  To no avail, as the crows ignored it and continued their shouting and cawing.

After some time the noise of all the feathered cast diminished and the shadow of what appeared to be a third hawk flew quickly and quietly through the dark greens of the mid-level trees into the distant peninsula and beyond my sight.    I did not see the other hawks leave, but the woods became silent once again as the crows followed quietly.

Was this a young'un being driven away by the resident crows and being protected by mom and dad?  Made me wonder if hawks ever gang up on crows to make a point?

9 comments:

Brian Miller said...

ha. cool to ponder the interworkings of bird society...they do interact very interestingly quite often...the crows are busy eating my pears right now...

kenju said...

we have had a murder of crows hanging around our cul-de-sac for the last six months or so. I feel sorry for them, since about all they do in this heat is pant and look for food. I haven't seen our resident hawk try to scare them away.

Bossy Betty said...

There was an owl in our tree the other day and the crows decided to make getting it to leave an all day event. Noise! Yikes!

chris said...

it used to be we had crows here in late summer. now they're here year round. i wish they weren't so loud and raucous and i wish there weren't so many of them. i scare them away whenever i can - but they always come back!

Hilary said...

There's so much to observe in the bird world. I love crows.. so intelligent.

Mage said...

Those noisy critters live up here by our house and the crows live down the hill near the sloughs. Never the twain shall meet in my neighborhood.

:)

Bob Bushell said...

That's nature.

Pauline said...

I think there are times when hawks may try to threaten crows, but crows themselves are almost always in gangs. I am fond of crows, noise and all. They don't hang around the cottage till late summer and then they are accompanied by the equally noisy blue jays. They are, to me, the harbingerS of autumn.

Kerri said...

Tabor, you paint wonderful word pictures. No need for photographs at all, but yours are always an added delight.
How interesting to watch the local bird community. They never fail to fascinate.
Our crows apparently find enough to keep them occupied outside our yard, and I've hardly seen a hawk all summer. The redtails are around, but they nest in the woods and mostly keep to themselves.